Posted by Nicole on February 18, 2014
rest” may not be a cute way of describing a restful night of sleep.
When we get the right amount of sleep at night, it helps us to be
more alert, but it also helps our mood and even our physical health.
If you've ever missed a few hours, or even a day of sleep, then you
already know what it can do to the way that you feel, the way that
you look, and the way that you interact with others.
in a day and age when people are expected to work 10 to 12 hour
shifts and balance a family life, it's often your sleep that ends up
getting shortchanged. Most people don't imagine that they need more
than four to five hours, but in reality you may need as many as nine
hours of sleep depending on your age, your physical level activity,
your diet, and other indicators. The trick is to find your sweet
spot, and then to put that as your highest priority. Here's why.
we sleep, we improve our memory, our ability to focus, and our
ability to learn new information. When we miss out on sleep, on the
other hand, we're more likely to eat poorly, become easily confused
or angry, or even become depressed at otherwise trivial events.
Missing too much sleep too often puts you at risk of depression, as
mentioned. It's no coincidence that people who are chronically
sleepless are also depressed as well; whether one becomes before the
other is largely irrelevant.
an impaired sense of awareness, a poor memory, and a lower ability to
understand and process information can have a drastic impact on the
relationships and interactions that you have with other people. Over
time, this can lead to an inability to clearly communicate ideas or
process ideas that other people attempt to communicate with you. On a
basic, mechanical level, it turns your brain into something of a
hermit that can't understand the world outside of its cave, and
that's only the logistical impact that sleeplessness has on the
the chemical side of the equation, sleeplessness can lead to lowered
levels of both serotonin and melatonin, both of which are important
for the regulation of mood and sleep cycles. Lowered levels of
serotonin actually predict lower levels of both melatonin and
lack of quality sleep. As we get older, we also experience lowered production of
boost serotonin levels, foods that are rich in vitamin B6 and
magnesium can be powerful aids. Another all natural supplement that's
completely free? Sunlight, which helps us to produce vitamin D. These
are all coenzymes which help to convert tryptophan, a molecule found
in food, into serotonin. More serotonin, and exposure to sunlight,
means more melatonin, which means more sleep. Although this isn't a
silver bullet for every sleep issue, it may help to give you a
better night's rest and an improved mood the next day.